Tag Archives: Women

This pleased me more than I can say…

23 Feb


Happy Saturday Warriors

21 Feb


From the site:

In the midst of the 2015 Berlinale, Amma Asante gave the closing speech at an International Women’s Film Festival Network (IWFFN) event on February 12. The director was candid about the “horrific” ten years it took to get her sophomore film, “Belle,” off the ground, while offering a rousing inspirational figure in her (sur)namesake, the Ghanaian warrior queen Yaa Asantewaa, who helped her persevere in her writing and directing career.

Here is Asante’s clothing speech in full (emphases hers), a poignant and encouraging reminder that no woman fights alone.

Monday Musings: I won’t smile…

25 Nov

So don’t ask me.

Last week was a long week for me. I had a bunch of meetings, a bunch of deadlines and drama with my car. You can imagine I was a little bit stressed out. I was walking into my office thinking about my to-do list, my plan of attack for the day and what I was going to do about my vehicle, obviously with total disregard for the appearance of my face, when I noticed a young man walking towards me. No big deal, its a street people walk towards you all the time.

He looked at me and I looked at him preparing myself to give a polite smile as I always do, when suddenly he says, “Smile. Put a smile on that face.”

I was already in mid-polite smile when he said it so he followed it up with “Pretty!”

I wish that I hadn’t smiled.

I wish that I was not driven by some foolhardy need to be polite when people pass me on the street. I do genuinely try to give a polite smile or a courteous head nod when I pass people especially if we’ve made some sort of eye contact but I can not abide being told to smile and I am totally disappointed that this guy was walking around the rest of the day thinking that he got me to smile. Why? Why did this put me in a funky mood for the morning replaying all the things I would have/could have done in this situation?

  1. I am not a dog. You should not command me to do things on the street just because you can and think you have the right to.
  2. My role in life is not to please you. However you may be feeling as you walk down the street, elated, depressed or whatever, it is not my job to serve in improving your mood. While me smiling might make you happy, you don’t have the right to request it from me especially in such a drive-by fashion.
  3. When was the last time a random woman on the street told you to do anything? Never? And yet you find it completely appropriate to tell a random woman on the street to do something. Awesome. No really that’s not sarcasm I think its great that you’ve deigned to exert your masculine power over me. It was a great experience, lets do it again some time.

It’s not the first time strange men have yelled things on the street to me. You would be surprised what a fresh hair cut does to the men of San Francisco. I doubt very much it will be the last time someone yells something at me but I hope that if you are a man who is reading this that the next time you think “I should tell that woman ….” that you keep it to yourself.

Ain’t nobody got time for that.

Friday Reflection: Submit!

6 Jan

So as you know, One of my goals for this year is to submit to at least 6 journals this year. To help myself with that goal I started searching for some places to submit. Some of them I have submitted to before and others are new. Here are the places that I want to submit this year (plus my usual commentary).

  • Torch: Poetry, prose and short stories by African American Women. Edited by Amanda Johnston.  I have submitted to Torch before and I will keep submitting to them because I respect the work they do. Torch features African American Women and gives emerging writers the opportunity to be seen while also showcasing the work of an established writer. It’s an online journal so it is easy to access and I appreciate that. So, I’m going to try again this year. Dates for Submission: April 15 through August 31.
  • So to Speak. Edited by Siwar Masannat. I only recently heard of this journal but I like what they offer as well. You maybe able to tell that I like journals that focus on women’s issues and feminist view points. This is the way I think of my work right now so I definitely appreciate journals who focus on this. Dates for Submission: January 1 through March 15 (Fall) and August 1 through October 15(Spring, reading fee $15)
  • Generations Literary Magazine. Edited by Kiala Givehand. This journal is edited by my good friend and I have talked about it plenty of times before. I really like the idea of the young and old, the established and the emerging and the different genres being in conversation with one another. I don’t assume I’ll be published just because I know the editor but it would be an honor to be featured in this new journal. Dates for Submission: The next dates have not been stated yet but I’m hoping to submit for issue four.
  • Lavendar Review. Edited by Mary Meriam. This a lesbian e-zine and I’ve been reading the issues and it seems really interesting. It is focused on lesbian work and work focused on lesbian issues. Dates for Submission: June 1, 2012(deadline)
  • The Postcard Press. Edited by Caitlin O’ Sullivan. I subscribed to this “journal” a few months ago. I love the concept behind getting a little post card of poetry each month and I have enjoyed receiving them. I’m a big fan of  small poems. I like haiku, the work of Lorine Niedecker and just short work. Thats why I love this concept so much. Dates of Submission: Submit by January 31, 2012: WONDER; Submit by March 31, 2012: LIES I ALMOST BELIEVE; Submit by May 31, 2012: MAGIC
  • 580 Split. Edited by Mills Graduate Students. Mills Colleges very own literary magazine. I’ve left the editor open because by the time I submit I won’t know who the editor is. Obviously it would be an honor to be published by my peers at my alma mater. I also really appreciate the fact that 580 Split has always been really  focused on the community that it comes from and I love that. Dates of Submission: Not sure yet. Probably Fall next year some time. 

Those are my 6 must submit ones. I want to submit more but I figure if I can do at least these 6 I can feel productive.  Do you have any must places to submit to? Or a journal that you want to read several issues of this year? Share!

Video Monday: Jewelle Gomez

19 Dec


Video Monday: Octavia E. Butler

12 Dec


Video Monday: Suheir Hammad

28 Nov

Tuesday Poem: Day 15 Poem 3

22 Nov
I long to be a woman
who has no victims
whose venom is removed
and to be declawed
I long to be a woman
who is free and easy
I long to be a woman

Tuesday Poems: On dicussing the “For Colored Girls” Film with her family

18 Oct

On Discussing the “For Colored Girls” Film with Her Family


She refuses to let a man say

his presence is more valuable than hers

believes in the beauty women make

on the impression without a man

beside them to build on stereotypes

She will not accept

that it is necessary to see the ominous face

to feel the fear

she cites horror films

cites feeling

is waved off as an artist

who is meta enough to “get it”

but doesn’t understand the “ordinary person”

she is led to believe that she should lower

expectations because everyone else is

ans so why shouldn’t she?

She does not apologize for intellect

for studied opinion

and instead begins to feel ambushed

as though the landmine was placed before her

just as she was blindfolded

she does not believe

that seeing a world en pointe without

seeing the fall is depreciated in value

that popular opinion necessitates balance

she has no fear

no feeling of indignation

only rage at being shamed

Thursday Treat: Links I love 10/13/2011

13 Oct